Pressing the Pause Button

Post a Comment » Written on January 21st, 2012     
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Today’s post is written by Jo Anne Taylor, Director of Music and Worship at Bethlehem Covenant Church in Minneapolis, MN.

Several Christmases ago, my boss gave me a small box of chocolates. But this wasn’t just candy. “When the chocolates are gone,” she said, “keep the box on your desk. It won’t be empty. It holds a pause, that you can use whenever you need it. It will always be right there, in the box on your desk.”

empty boxThis week, a worship leader in the Better Together group asked, “How many of you include intentional silence in your worship time?” and I remembered the first time I tried this, in a Lenten Wednesday prayer service.  After about 10 seconds, people started shuffling papers, squirming and coughing. Those ten seconds seemed like an eternity. Week after week, however, as we came to the time for silence, it began to grow and deepen. People welcomed the opportunity to rest in the quietness, to hold the pause that was offered.

In just over a week, many of us will meet in Chicago for the Midwinter Conference. There will be great teaching, plenty of learning opportunities, wonderful worship, and time to connect with others who serve in the Evangelical Covenant Church. May there also be an empty box waiting for each of you, if only a figurative one. Even if you are not planning to attend Midwinter in person, I hope you will connect to the webcasts and contribute your comments throughout the week. Wherever you are, may you know what it means to spend some time in stillness before the Lord, to observe the beauty and joy of a simple pause.



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